This photo of my old Cambo 5x7 was taken by Stuart Murdoch whilst we were on location in North Melbourne in the late afternoon in May 2018. At this particular moment of the photo session I had briefly wandered over to the other side of the railway bridge to scope the old bridge and the city with my Sony digital camera.
At the time we were in the process of making some photos for our forthcoming exhibition at the Atkins Photo Lab for the 2018 SALA festival about old industrial Melbourne. The exhibition now has a title: Collaborations: Interrogating Melbourne's Changing Urban Landscape. This is collaboration in a substantive sense: subject matter, documentary photography of the object as interpretation rather than depiction, and helping to develop an Australian tradition of a topographical understanding of the human/nature relationship.
I have decided to include some of my older Melbourne photographs in the exhibition, such as this one:
The groups name for the purposes of SALA is Australian Topographics with its references back to the American large format photography of the 1860s and the 1970s. The Australian reference is to David Stephenson's photographs of Tasmanian dams starting in the 1980s, which he interpreted in terms of the technological sublime. This interpretation of the sublime builds on, and works within, this body of work about the American construction of awesome technology--eg., railroads, pipelines, bridges and rocket launches at Cape Canaveral.